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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Literatures, Languages and Cultures : Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies

Postgraduate Course: Intensive Arabic A (IMES11021)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Literatures, Languages and Cultures CollegeCollege of Humanities and Social Science
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 11 (Postgraduate) AvailabilityNot available to visiting students
SCQF Credits50 ECTS Credits25
SummaryIntensive Arabic A (IAA) is the first part of the ab initio intensive course in Modern Standard Arabic (MSA), the literary language of the Middle East and North Africa.
Spoken Arabic is also taught in parallel to MSA. In Semester 1 the focus is towards Levantine Arabic but learners wishing to switch to Egyptian Arabic are able to do so in Semester 2.

IAA is worth 50 credits and runs in Semester 1 only. No previous knowledge of Arabic is required for entry to the course.

The aim of Intensive Arabic A is to enable students to achieve a certain confidence level in Arabic in the four skills areas of reading, writing, speaking and listening. More emphasis at this stage will be placed on speaking and reading, as progress in these areas tends to be faster. Reading and writing will be Modern Standard Arabic (MSA), which is the medium for written and official communication throughout the Arab World, and its media. The spoken side of the course will be done in a simplified version of MSA or what is known as ¿Formal Spoken Arabic¿ or Educated Spoken Arabic (ESA). To achieve this, students will be introduced to the basic structures of Levantine Arabic.
Course description Not entered
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements This course is only available for students enrolled on MSc Arab World Studies or MSc in International Relations with Arabic.
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2017/18, Not available to visiting students (SS1) Quota:  None
Course Start Semester 1
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 500 ( Seminar/Tutorial Hours 192, Feedback/Feedforward Hours 4, Formative Assessment Hours 8, Summative Assessment Hours 2.25, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 10, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 284 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 40 %, Coursework 60 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) Progress tests (10%), E-Learning (15%), Coursework (10%), Mid-term assessment (25%), Final exam which includes in-house listening assessment, centralized 2-hr written exam and in-house oral exam (40%).
Feedback Not entered
Exam Information
Exam Diet Paper Name Hours & Minutes
Main Exam Diet S1 (December)2:00
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Modern Standard Arabic: Reading and Writing

    a. students will have covered the basic grammatical structures in terms of the main types of verb conjugations, sentence structure, noun and adjective agreement;
    b. read and understand a short passage or article with the help of a dictionary;
    c. write a simple letter or postcard;
    d. students will have acquired a vocabulary of at least 1500 words;
    e. begin to understand what is appropriate usage in
    MSA as opposed to Spoken Arabic.

  2. Speaking and Listening

    a. students will have covered all the basic grammatical structures of formal spoken Arabic;
    b. students will have a acquired a vocabulary of at least 1500 words (the vast majority shared with MSA) over a range of everyday topics.
    c. make themselves understood and exchange ideas and information on familiar topics in predictable everyday situations;
    d. interact with reasonable ease in structured situations, given some help;
    e. understand enough to manage simple, routine exchanges without undue effort;
    f. begin to understand ¿diglossia¿ in Arabic in terms of appropriate usage in Spoken Arabic as opposed to MSA used in written texts and in formal speeches and interviews.
Reading List
Weeks 1-5 of the course teach students how to read, write and pronounce the Arabic alphabet through simple vocabulary items and greetings, using the following books:

Wightwick, Jane; Gaafar, Mahmoud. Mastering Arabic 1 (Palgrave Macmillan, 2007). ISBN 0230013120.

Diouri, Mourad. Teach Yourself: Read & Write Arabic Script (Hodder Education, 2011). ISBN 9781444100198.

From Week 5, students embark on the core course book:

Brustad, Kristen E.; Al-Batal, Mahmoud; Al-Tonsi, Abbas. al-Kitaab fii Ta¿allum al-¿Arabiyya: Part 1 (Georgetown University Press, 2004). ISBN 158901104X.

Students must also purchase the following essential grammar supplement:

Wightwick, Jane; Gaafar, Mahmoud. Mastering Arabic Grammar (Palgrave Macmillan, 2005). ISBN 1403941092.

Spoken Arabic

We recommend purchasing the following Levantine Arabic coursebook:

Featherstone, Jonathan. BBC Talk Arabic Pack (Pearson Education Limited BBC Active, 2009). ISBN 1406652938.

Further reference

Students who wish to continue to Intensive Arabic B may consider purchasing a more detailed Arabic grammar book for reference. It is extremely useful to read a variety of explanations of grammatical constructions.

Haywood J.A.; Nahmad, H. M. A New Arabic Grammar of the Written Language. (Lund Humphries Publishers Ltd, 1965 + reprints). ISBN 085331585X.

Students may also find it helpful to purchase an Arabic-English dictionary. The best choice for undergraduates is:

Hans Wehr. A Dictionary of Modern Written Arabic (Spoken Language Services Inc., U.S, 1994). ISBN 0879500034.
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Not entered
Course organiserMr Jonathan Featherstone
Tel: (0131 6)51 1531
Course secretaryMrs Alisa Wilkinson
Tel: (0131 6)50 4465
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